We evaluate through simulations and experimental data the impact of process non-idealities with a particular attention to mask CD uniformity for 44 nm pitch DRAM contact hole array. Several millions of contact holes are simulated with PROLITH after full-physical stochastic process calibration. Process Windows, LCDU and failure rates are compared at nominal conditions, assuming no variation in process parameters vs. the stochastic process variation obtained by inclusion of perturbations of process parameters. The simulations are repeated including Gaussian distributed mask CD variations. Skewness, kurtosis, and failure rates are calculated..
LCDU (Local Critical Dimension Uniformity) is one of the biggest challenges in EUV lithography as well as throughput. High contrast illumination, so called, leaf hexapole illumination is proposed for staggered contact-hole array pattern. Leaf hexapole illumination shows much better LCDU compared with traditional hexapole illumination which has been used in DUV lithography so far. Stochastic noise model which was developed based on the particle nature of photon is updated to supplement a missing term. Model prediction is well matched with experimental results in wide range of wafer CD and mask CD. Further optimization of LCDU and/or dose-to-size can be predicted through mask CD optimization. By using illumination optimization and mask CD optimization technique, EUV single exposure process can be applied below D1z node or beyond.
As we presented in the last conference, it is much difficult to get down the k1 limit of EUV lithography compared to that of optical lithography especially recent immersion lithography. Even though current 0.33NA NXE3300 tool has enhanced aberration characteristics and variable illumination mode than its predecessor, ADT and NXE3100, still there are limitations related with resolution capability of EUV lithography. First of all, photon shot noise and immature resist performances play an important role in patterning of very fine patterns. As already known, low sensitivity resists have been widely used to reduce shot noise. However, when considering productivity in EUV lithography, high sensitivity resists are inevitable, so it is necessary to increase image contrast by reducing scanner blur like aberration, M3D, stray light et al. We have investigated the impact of aberration and limitation in illumination pupil fill ratio in EUV. In particular, the aberration sensitivity is different by the illumination conditions, this was intensified when using the particular pupil. Because the lens calibration is conducted with standard illumination condition in NXE3300, it is necessary to consider different aberration sensitivity in accordance with pattern and used pupil condition in EUV lithography. To ensure the process margin of tech node close to limit, a flexpupil with low pupil fill ratio (PFR) than 0.2 were required. Hence in order to avoid through-put loss at this condition, the new concept of the illuminator design is required without light loss. Contamination of collector mirror can affect the patterning also. We will also report about the patterning effect of pupil deformation by degraded collector in low PFR condition.
Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) is the most promising technology as substitute for multiple patterning based on ArF immersion lithography. If enough productivity can be accomplished, EUV will take main role in the chip manufacturing. Since the introduction of NXE3300, many significant results have been achieved in source power and availability, but lots of improvements are still required in various aspects for the implementation of EUV lithography on high volume manufacturing. Among them, it is especially important to attain high sensitivity resist without degrading other resolution performance. In this paper, performances of various resists were evaluated with real device patterns on NXE3300 scanner and technical progress of up-to-date EUV resists will be shown by comparing with the performance of their predecessors. Finally the prospect of overcoming the triangular trade-off between sensitivity, resolution, line edge roughness (LER) and achieving high volume manufacturing will be discussed.
As design rule of semiconductor decreases continuously, overlay error control gets more and more important and challenging. It is also true that On Product Overlay (OPO) of leading edge memory device shows unprecedented level of accuracy, owing to the development of precision optics, mechanic stage and alignment system with active compensation method. However, the heating of reticle and lens acts as a dominant detriment against further improvement of overlay. Reticle heating is more critical than lens heating in current advanced scanners because lens heating can be mostly compensated by feed-forward control algorithm. In recent years, the tools and technical ideas for reticle heating control are proposed and thought to reduce the reticle heating effect. Nevertheless, it is not still simple to predict the accurate heating amount and overlay. And it is required to investigate the parameters affecting reticle heating quantitatively. In this paper, the reticle pattern density and exposure dose are considered as the main contributors, and the effects are investigated through experiments. Mask set of various transmittance are prepared by changing pattern density. After exposure with various doses, overlay are measured and analyzed by comparing with reference marks exposed in heating free condition. As a result, it is discovered that even in the case of low dose and high transmittance, reticle heating is hardly avoidable. It is also shown that there is a simple relationship among reticle heating, transmittance and exposure dose. Based on this relationship, the reticle heating is thought to be predicted if the transmittance and dose are fixed.